Convert Plastic Vanilla Flavor E Coli Bacteria
Scientists from The University of Edinburgh have discovered that a lab engineered version of the common bacteria E. coli can be used to convert post-consumer plastic into vanillin, which is the primary component of extracted vanilla beans and responsible for its familiar taste as well as smell. Put simply, the lab engineered bacteria transforms terephthalic acid, a molecule derived from polyethylene terephthalate (PET), into vanillin through a series of chemical reactions.

The research team also showcased how this technique can be used to convert a standard water bottle into vanillin by adding the E. coli to the degraded plastic waste. Currently, the scientists have deemed that the vanillin produced would be fit for human consumption, but further experimental tests may be required to confirm this.

Cuisinart ICE-100 1.5-Quart Ice Cream and Gelato Maker, Fully Automatic with a Commercial Quality Compressor and 2-Paddles, 10-Minute Keep Cool Feature, Black and Stainless Steel
  • SUPERIOR FUNCTION: The Cuisinart fully automatic ice cream maker with commercial compressor makes lusciously rich gelato and ice cream-batch after...
  • CAPACITY: Makes 1.5-quarts of your favorite ice cream, frozen yogurt, gelato or sorbet
  • CONTROL: 60-minute countdown timer with touchpad controls and blue LCD readout for accuracy

This is the first example of using a biological system to upcycle plastic waste into a valuable industrial chemical and this has very exciting implications for the circular economy. The results from our research have major implications for the field of plastic sustainability and demonstrate the power of synthetic biology to address real-world challenges,” said Joanna Sadler, First author and BBSRC Discovery Fellow , School of Biological Sciences, University of Edinburgh.

Bonus Video

Write A Comment